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Feds overlooked Texas jihadi because “there are so many like him”

“There are so many like him that you have to prioritize your investigations.” But…but…it’s a tiny minority of extremists!

“Texas Attacker Left Trail of Extremist Ideas on Twitter,” by Scott Shane, New York Times, May 5, 2015:

WASHINGTON — Counterterrorism officials on Tuesday were studying the electronic trails left by two men killed by a police officer as they shot at a Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest in Texas, looking for any direct ties to the Islamic State extremist group in Syria. The group praised the gunmen in a statement as “soldiers of the caliphate,” the unified Muslim land that it purports to be building.

But any secret ties that officials might find may be less important than the public exchanges of messages on Twitter by one of the gunmen, Elton Simpson, in the weeks before the attack. Mr. Simpson, a convert to Islam with a long history of extremism, regularly traded calls for violence on Twitter with Islamic State fighters and supporters, as well as avowed enemies of Pamela Geller, the organizer of the cartoon contest.

His Twitter contacts included Junaid Hussain, a British fighter with the Islamic State in Syria known as Abu Hussain al-Britani, and Mohamed Abdullahi Hassan, a Somali-American now in Somalia who uses the name Mujahid Miski and frequently promotes the Islamic State. Both men called for violence, and Mr. Hassan had suggested the Texas event as a possible target.

On April 23, 10 days before the Texas attack, Mr. Hassan linked to the planned cartoon event in Texas, praised the January shootings at a satirical newspaper in Paris and called on jihadists in the United States to follow that example.

“The brothers from the Charlie Hebdo attack did their part,” Mr. Hassan wrote in the post. “It’s time for brothers in the #US to do their part.”

Later the same day, Mr. Simpson posted about the cartoon contest, using the handle Shariah is Light: “When will they ever learn. They are planning on selecting the best picture drawn of Rasulullah (saws) in Texas.” Rasulullah (saws) is a respectful phrase for the prophet.

The onslaught of recruitment propaganda has multiplied the number of online enthusiasts for the Islamic State in the United States, giving counterterrorism investigators the difficult task of deciding which are simply fantasizing in public and which might be planning violence.

“The ISIS guys are talking to these wannabes on Twitter all day long,” a senior law enforcement official said. “It’s like the devil is sitting on their shoulder saying, ‘Come on, they’re insulting the prophet, what are you going to do about it?’ ”

The official, who would speak about the continuing investigation only on condition of anonymity, said that although Mr. Simpson had long been under F.B.I. scrutiny, he had not appeared to be preparing for violence. “There are so many like him that you have to prioritize your investigations,” the official said….

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Video: Robert Spencer on Newsmax TV on the Texas jihad attack

Pamela Geller in Time Magazine: A Response to My Critics—This Is a War

Dr. Rich Swier joins the Tom Trento Show to explain “FITNA” in TEXAS

Join me and my special in-studio guest Dr. Rich Swier as he explains the Islamic doctrine of “FITNA” and how it is relevant to the Islamic State jihad attack in Garland, Texas. Dr. Swier explains that Fitna (resisting Islam) is worse than the slaughter we see in the Middle East and the slaughter which nearly happened in Garland.

Also in our show today is an Israel update by Arie Egozi detailing a “phantom” attack at a weapons depot in the Sudan and more information on the Iranian nuclear crisis.

After this show was taped UK Imam Anjem Choudary told Pamela Geller on the Sean Hannity Show that she should be tried in Shariah Court and slaughtered… for speaking out against Islam. Why did he say this?

The reason that Imam Choudary believes this is because the Quran says so. What Imam Choudary is demonstrating is the Global Islamic Movement strategy of Fitna. Fitna is defined as “[F]orces that cause controversy, fragmentation, scandal, chaos, or discord within the Muslim community, disturbing social peace and order.”

Quran versus 2: 191-193, reads:

And kill them wherever you overtake them and expel them from wherever they have expelled you, and fitnah is worse than killing. And do not fight them at al-Masjid al- Haram until they fight you there. But if they fight you, then kill them. Such is the recompense of the disbelievers.

And if they cease, then indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.

Fight them until there is no [more] fitnah and [until] worship is [acknowledged to be] for Allah . But if they cease, then there is to be no aggression except against the oppressors.

Imam Choudary is doing what the Quran demands. Slaughter any unbeliever who causes Fitna for the “fitna is worse than killing.”

RELATED ARTICLES:

Feds overlooked Texas jihadi because “there are so many like him”

Robert Spencer in PJM: PEN members forget purpose of free speech

What to Make of ISIS Claim of Responsibility for Texas Shootings

Egypt: Five Christian children held for blasphemy – for insulting the Islamic State

What Constitutes an ‘Insult’ to Mohammed

FBI under increased scrutiny for failing to prevent Garland jihad shooting

They had Elton Simpson on their radar for years. But it is FBI policy in the Obama Administration not to acknowledge, much less study, the beliefs that motivate such attacks. The FBI training materials, by order of John Brennan and Barack Obama, do not mention Islam and jihad in connection with terrorism.

So how can the FBI distinguish between those who are genuine threats and those who are not?

They can’t, because such questions will turn on matters involving their Islamic piety — which is off limits for investigation.

“Mohammed Contest Attack an ISIS First in the US,” by Charlene Aaron, CBN News, May 5, 2015:

ISIS says it was behind the attack outside a contest in Texas featuring cartoons of Islam’s prophet Mohammed. It is the first time the group claimed to have carried out an attack inside the United States.

Meanwhile, the FBI is under increased scrutiny for failing to prevent Sunday’s attack after it had closely monitored one of the suspects in the shooting.

Federal agents had been monitoring 30-year-old Elton Simpson for possible terrorist ties for more than a decade.

Simpson and his roommate were shot dead after opening fire on a security guard outside the event.

In the past, FBI agents recorded Simpson talking about fighting “non-believers” for Allah and about plans to travel to Africa to link up with Islamist brothers in Somalia.

Five years ago, he was arrested for attempting to join an al Qaeda-affiliated group there.

Years spent investigating Simpson for terrorism ties resulted in three years of probation, placement on the no-fly list, and $600 in fines and court fees.

His attorney says he became increasingly agitated.

“I mean, I know that some of the statements that he made were, ‘If you die on the battlefield’ than you get, you know, whatever, the wives and things like that, but I think you hear that out of a lot of people. I mean, that’s a belief of the Muslim faith,” Kristina Sitton, Simpson’s attorney, said in 2011.

Simpson recently posted messages on Twitter about his dismay with his country.

Just minutes before Sunday’s shooting, he tweeted that he and a brother had pledged loyalty to ISIS.

“May Allah accept us as mujahideen [jihadists],” he wrote.

Though the FBI was aware of his social media rants, he was not under 24-hour surveillance.

RELATED ARTICLES:

Egypt: Five Christian children held for blasphemy – for insulting the Islamic State

Here we go: McClatchy suggests limits on free speech after Texas jihad shooting

TEXAS JIHAD – “We Were There!”

We were there! We were in the middle of the first Islamic State jihad attack on U.S. soil that targeted innocent American citizens.

I do not mean we were some of the news media “talking heads,” I mean we were part of the American Citizens who were the targets of the two jihadis, hoping to kill us.

In this show I and the United West team sit back on site in Garland Texas and share their personal reflections on their harrowing experience.

RELATED ARTICLES: 

What to Make of ISIS Claim of Responsibility for Texas Shootings

Egypt: Five Christian children held for blasphemy – for insulting the Islamic State

What Constitutes an ‘Insult’ to Mohammed


 

garlandteam

The United West Garland Texas Team.

Pamela Gellar reports:

The FBI has confirmed Phoenix native Elton Simpson, a Muslim convert from Phoenix, Arizona, as one of the shooters responsible for attacking a Draw Muhammad Contest in Garland, Texas on Sunday. Simpson had been previously convicted of lying to the FBI about his jihadist intentions in 2010. Simpson made multiple pro-Sharia statements then that led the FBI to request, unsuccessfully, that he be placed on a no-fly list.

Simpson had been indicted in January 2010 on charges of lying to the FBI. He was subsequently convicted of lying to law enforcement, but not of planning to engage in violent terrorist activity abroad.

The indictment chronicles recorded conversations from 2005-2010 with an FBI informant named Dabla Deng, who introduced himself to Simpson as someone looking to learn more about Islam. Simpson was not shy about his beliefs, praising those who “fight” for Islam and encouraging Deng to renounce the West.

“They trying to bring democracy over there man, they’re trying to make them live by man-made laws, not by Allah’s laws. That’s why they get fought. You try to make us become slaves to man? No we slave to Allah [sic], we going to fight you to the death,” Simpson told Deng on one of the tapes.

575x369xgeller-summit-575x369.png.pagespeed.ic.goBZxwjPr90mfB7VdWUnSimpson spoke often of Somalia, and a desire to go there. He told Deng in recorded audio that he was considering traveling to a madrassa in South Africa and making his way up to Somalia to join the terrorist group Al Shabaab. While Al Shabaab has been an Islamist threat for many years, they are most popularly known today for an attack that killed 147 Christian students at Garissa University, Kenya in April, and a 2013 attack on Westgate Mall in the same nation, which brought them to international prominence. Experts warned in April that Al Shabaab is evolving from a local to a “transnational” jihadist threat.

The Court document notes that his repeated references to getting ready to “bounce” to Africa and join the “brothers” prompted FBI officials to attempt to place Simpson on a no-fly list. They failed: “Because the Defendant was being deceptive about the possibility of traveling to Somalia, however, the FBI became concerned that Mr. Simpson in fact did intend to go Somalia to engage in violent jihad. As a result, the agents attempted to prevent or disrupt the Defendant’s travels. The FBI tried, unsuccessfully,to place Mr. Simpson on the no-fly list.”

It is not clear why the application to place Simpson on the no-fly list was rejected. Concerns about Muslims traveling out of the West and into Islamist war zones were lower in 2010, however, at a time when the Islamic State was still an off-shoot of Al Qaeda (they split in 2014).

Simpson was eventually arrested and plainly claimed to have never discussed this issue, the crime for which he was convicted. The court found him guilty of lying about discussing support of jihad, but not of plotting to join or aid a terrorist organization.

The Court writes that “the Government did not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the Defendant’s discussions about traveling to Somalia were related to the political situation Agent Hebert described.” Agent Herbert explained previously in the document how Al Shabaab had developed into a militarized terrorist force in the chaotic Somalian political landscape.

The Court also argues that Simpson’s statements were ambiguous:

It is true that the Defendant had expressed sympathy and admiration for individuals who “fight” non-Muslims as well as his belief in the establishment of Shariah law, all over the world including in Somalia. What precisely was meant by “fighting” whenever he discussed it, however, was not clear. Neither was what the Defendant meant when he stated he wanted to get to the “battlefield” in Somalia.

The official number of Americans who have joined jihadist groups are believed to be in the dozens, particularly the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.

Read the full Court case against Simpson here:

Texas Muslim Shooters’ Profile: Elton Simpson and Nadir Hamid Soofi

Elton Simpson and Nadir Hamid Soofi, both suspects killed in the Garland, Texas jihad attack have been identified from the Arizona vehicle registrations and driver photo IDs. Simpson, 30, and Soofi, 34 were roommates in a central Phoenix condominium. The Phoenix condominium was the subject of an FBI and police bomb squad investigation early this morning

Simpson was the author of the tweets sent just before the attack. He has been the subject of an FBI terrorism investigation since 2006 and was convicted in a Federal Court trial in 2011 for material support for terrorism, an attempt to travel to Somalia to Join Al Shabaab. One of the two perpetrators is alleged as having connections to CAIR, the self-styled Muslim civil rights group, an affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood.

 ISIS in a series of tweets,  sent prior to the May 3rd Muhammad Art Contest sponsored by Pam Geller’s American Freedom  Defense Initiative,   inspired brothers  in the U.S. to undertake an attack on the event. ISIS social media claimed responsibility for the attack in which both perpetrators were killed and a security officer slightly injured. The pre-event ISIS tweets doubtless increased the security arrangements at the AFDI event. A purported Muhammad Art contest  that featured a speech by Dutch Freedom Party leader, Geert Wilders and appearances by Rep. Louie Gohmert, Geller and Robert Spencer and others.  200 attendees were in lockdown following the attack and vehicles impounded as evidence in the crime scene. The event was webcast yesterday by the team from The United West led by Tom Trento.

Trento will discuss his experience at the Garland, Texas Muhammad Art Contest event with this writer and Mike Bates, co-host of “Your Turn” on 1330am WEBY, Northwest Florida‘s Talk Radio.  You may listen live here.

Heavy.com has compiled a dossier on the perpetrators of last night jihad attack in Garland, Texas, “Elton Simpson: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know.”  The article reported:

Elton Simpson has been identified as one of the two gunmen who opened fire Sunday night outside the Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest in Garland, Texas. An unarmed security guard was shot, but survived with a non-life-threatening wound, before Simpson and his accomplice were killed by police.

Simpson, 30, and the other gunman, his roommate, 34-year-old Nadir Hamid Soofi, are from Phoenix, Arizona.

Simpson was “well known” by the FBI and was the subject of a previous terror investigationABC News reports. He and Soofi were armed with assault rifles and wearing body protection, police said. They exchanged fire with a Garland police officer armed with handgun.

Simpson’s father, Dunston Simpson, told ABC News, “We are Americans and we believe in America. What my son did reflects very badly on my family,” adding that his son “made a bad choice.”

WFAA reports that FBI agents were searching the gunmen’s Phoenix, Arizona home.

Police also remain at the scene of the shooting, and have been examining the gunmen’s car. They were concerned about explosives being hidden inside it.

[…]

The FBI began investigating Simpson in 2006, when they began recording conversations he was having with an informant. He was arrested in 2010.

According to court records, Simpson received a sentence of three years probation in 2011 after he was found guilty of making a false statement to the FBI.

Simpson told FBI agents he had not talked with others about traveling to Somalia, when he in fact had talked to others about traveling to the African country, according to court documents. Judge Mary H. Murguia found there wasn’t enough evidence to support the FBI’s claim that the travel was related to terrorism. He had elected for a trial by the judge, rather than a jury.

The FBI had claimed that Simpson was traveling to Somalia to engage in “violent jihad.” The FBI claimed he was planning to travel to Africa to join the al-Shabaab terror group, which has since been responsible for the deadly Kenyan terror attacks at the Nairobi mall and Garissa University.

Simpson’s probation ended in 2014.

The Volokh Conspiracy blog wrote about the case in 2011, calling it a “partial government victory / partial defeat.”

Read the court order explaining why Simpson was found guilty:

According to court documents, Simpson was born in Illinois and then moved to Phoenix, Arizona, where he “converted to the Muslim religion at a young age.”

His attorney during the 2010 trial, Kristina Sitton, told ABC News that Simpson was on the no-fly list and the FBI had tried to convince him to cooperate with them, including after his conviction. Sitton said she thought Simpson was “harmless,” according to ABC News:

He grew up the most normal guy. Just a normal high school guy… Converting to Islam seemed like a good thing for him. He had been going down a bad path and then he found Islam. He never struck me as someone who would do this sort of thing. I’m not a bleeding heart, I’m a Republican. I’ve seen some pretty bad guys and he seemed pretty normal.

Simpson was working at a dentist’s office in Arizona, but had been on vacation prior to the shooting, his father told ABC News. Dunston Simpson said he last spoke to his son three weeks ago, but they “had not much to talk about, because we had some very serious differences.” Dunston Simpson said Elton was a “good kid.”

Here are some items from the Heavy.com dossier on Nadir Hamid Soofi, “Nadir Hamid Soofi: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know”:

According to his Facebook page, Soofi spent a considerable amount of time with his little brother. He’s a graduate of the University of Utah and the International School of Islamabad in Pakistan. His page also shows multiple posts featuring Palestinian and anti-police propaganda. Frequently, he posts the phrase “Eid Mubarak” meaning celebration to the blessed. Soofi was the owner of Effinity Solutions, a carpet cleaning business in Phoenix. In July 2013, he called himselfa “newbie to the carpet cleaning industry.”

[…]

AZ Family reports that the two gunmen lived at an apartment on 19th Avenue and Thunderbird Road (above) in Phoenix. The day after the shooting, FBI agents, some clad in bomb squad gear, searched the apartment. The car they drove to the attack in Garland was registered in Arizona. The car, a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt, was owned by Soofi. He tried to sell it back in March 2015 for nearly $9,000.

Police said prior Soofi’s name being released that the two had gone to the event with the intention of killing people. Both were armed with assault rifles. Garland cops stopped short of calling the attack a terrorist incident.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image is of Elton Simpson and Nadir Hamid Soofi perpetrators of Garland, Texas attack on May 3, 2015.

Dutch MP Geert Wilders’ Warning on CAIR’s abuse of the First Amendment

Geert Wilders was on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on April 30, 2015 at a press conference with Rep. Steve King (R-IA), Louie Gohmert (R-TX) and Scott Perry (R-PA).  He  warned  Americans  about the dangers of  mass  Muslim immigration  and  suggested letting  Americans who volunteer   leave and   join  the Islamic State but be denied  return  to this country. He said:

I am warning America. Don’t think that what’s happening in Europe today will not happen in America tomorrow because it will. Islamic immigration has proven to be a Trojan horse, the jihadists are among us,” he added, warning of “enormous security problems” in the United States if Muslim immigrants are allowed to stay. Let them go, but never let them return.

The Congressmen praised Wilders exercise of free speech vis a vis his criticism of Islam, defense of Judeo-Christian values and Israel. Wilders paid court to this” beautiful land” with its protection of free speech rights and expressed “the wish that the he and other citizens of the EU” had the equivalent protection.  Wilders is once again the target of investigations by the Dutch police as the behest of Public Prosecutors in the Hague over his alleged hate speech remarks at a Freedom Party rally during the May, 2014 European Parliament elections in the Hague, over “ fewer Moroccans”.   Wilders has criticized Islam for being an ideology and the Qur’an for being the equivalent of Hitler’s Mein Kampf.  His most recent book, Marked for Death, presented that and more fundamental arguments referencing    Qur’anic doctrine, Hadith, Sunna and Shariah Islamic Law. Wilders defeated an earlier hate crime charge brought against him in the Amsterdam district court in 2011.

Watch the Wilders Capitol Hill press conference with Reps. King, Gohmert and Perry:

Prior to his Capitol Hill press conference, Wilders gave a speech on April 29, 2015 at the Washington, D.C., Conservative Opportunity Society.  Two Muslim U.S. Representatives, Keith Ellison (D-MN) and  Andre Carson sent a letter  on April 23, 2015 to Secretary of State Kerry and Department of Homeland Security Chief Jae Johnson seeking to bar Wilders entry to the US on the grounds that his speech violated provisions of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998. They wrote:

In the past, the United States has denied entry to international leaders under the authority of the International Religious Freedom Act which allows the Department of State to deny entry to a foreign leader who is responsible for severe violations of religious freedom. This precedent is applicable to Mr. Wilders.

[…]

In the U.S., freedom of speech is a bedrock principle that distinguishes free societies from ones living under oppressive regimes. Freedom of speech, however, is not absolute. It is limited by the legal and moral understanding that speech that causes the incitement of violence or prejudicial action against protected groups is wrong. As Mr. Wilders continues his pursuit of political power, granting him entry will embolden him to engage in further incitement of violence and discrimination against Muslims.

Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia are sweeping through Europe. Mr. Wilders is among the hateful leaders responsible for perpetuating prejudice. Allowing him to enter the United States will cause harm to our nation that values religious freedom and respects pluralism.

Eugene Volokh, a UCLA law professor and expert on free speech and religious freedom law in a “Volokh Conspiracy” column in the Washington Postexamined the arguments of the two Representatives, referencing Supreme Court case rulings, notably, Brandenburg v. Ohio and Hess v. Indiana, regarding “incitement. Volokh concluded:

Whether “Christian culture is superior to other cultures,” which groups should be allowed to immigrate into a country, and even whether Islam should be viewed as an ideology rather than a religion (an unsound distinction, in my view) are matters that the First Amendment allows us all to debate. The Congressmen quite clearly don’t want to allow Rep. Wilders to debate such matters here in the U.S. But their “In the U.S.” paragraph suggests that they view even such debates by Americans as constitutionally unprotected.

CAIR, the self styled Muslim civil rights group affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood,  sent  Government  Affairs Manager, Robert McCaw, to question Wilders and the Congressional Representatives who participated in Capitol Hill press conference.  The CAIR press release noted the exchange:

CAIR Government Affairs Manager Robert McCaw pressed Rep. Gohmert as to whether he stood by “Wilders’ statement that Islam is an ideology of a retarded culture.” Congressman Gohmert avoided the question only stating that he “proudly stands by Wilders” and that he may not always agree with him but will defend his right to make such comments.

McCaw also pressed Wilders on whether or not the Republican Party should adopt his Dutch Freedom Party’s proposal of “banning the Quran and the building of new mosques.” Wilders sidestepped the question by stating that he is “not trying to unify the two parties” and comparing the Quran to Hitler’s Mein Kampf.

[…]

“By endorsing and promoting Geert Wilders’ anti-Muslim hate, these elected officials tarnish the Republican Party’s reputation and harm our nation’s international image,” said McCaw.

CAIR arranged for a counter press with the authors of the letter, Reps. Ellison and Carson, joined by Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-NY) protesting Wilders anti-Islam stands and promoting inter-faith unity.

Watch the CAIR YouTube video of McCaw’s questioning of Wilders and Rep. Gohmert:

Tomorrow, May 3, 2015 Wilders will next appear at an event in Texas.  According to a Breitbart News report Wilders Will speak at the First Annual Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest. The event will be held May 3rd at the Curtis Caldwell Center, which is owned and operated by the Garland Independent School District, and hosted by the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI). The Curtis Caldwell Center was the site of an “Honor the Prophet” rally in January. About two thousand Texans came out to protest that event.

 Pam Geller and Robert Spencer of AFDI will also be speaking at the event.  For those interesting in watching this event. It will be live streamed at 5-7 (CST) and 6-8PM (EST). Read more, here.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image is of Geert Wilders at a press conference near Capitol building April 30, 2015 in Washington, DC (AFP Photo/Brendan Smialowski).